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Boris Johnson say UK stronger together as poll shows support for Scottish independence

Boris Johnson takes part in archery during a visit to the Premier Education Summer Camp at Sacred Heart of Mary Girl's School, Upminster in Essex. Picture by Lucy Young/Evening Standard/PA Wire 
Lewis McKenzie, PA

Boris Johnson has said it would be "such a shame" to lose the "magic" of the United Kingdom.

The British prime minister, speaking on a visit to St Joseph's school in Upminster, insisted that the UK is "better together".

It comes as polling indicates rising support for Scottish independence, with a Panelbase study in the Sunday Times last month putting support for a Yes vote in a referendum at 54% and support for No at 46%.

Mr Johnson said: "The union of the United Kingdom, for me it's the greatest political partnership the world has ever seen.

"And I think what people in this country often don't appreciate is the way in which the UK is seen abroad.

"They don't see us as England or Wales or Scotland or Northern Ireland, what they see is great British institutions.

"They see amazing British armed services, amazing British diplomacy, overseas aid, British science and technology, British arts, that's the thing that is admired and loved around the world.

"It would be such a shame to lose the power, the magic of that union. We are much, much stronger and better together than broken up."

Last month, Mr Johnson visited Scotland in a bid to strengthen support for the union, while the Sunday Times also reported that he will also travel to the country for a family holiday this weekend.

Four UK Cabinet ministers, including Chancellor Rishi Sunak, have also visited Scotland in recent weeks as part of their attempts to stave off support for Scottish independence.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon last week said she believed that Scottish independence would happen "sooner rather than later".

"I've spent my entire adult life campaigning for Scottish independence, I believe in Scottish independence with every fibre of my being," said Ms Sturgeon.

"I also believe that Scotland is going to be independent sooner rather than later and I'm also the SNP leader that now presides over support for Scottish independence."

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